These cute little hand and foot warmers are easy to make and a good way to use up fabric scraps. If you don’t have any fabric scraps, you can pick up the last bits from a roll at a fabric store for very little money.
Not only can these warm up your hands and feet, but if you add essential oils, you can turn them into personal diffusers and customize the scent according to your needs.
Try gifting the hand and foot warmers along with a small sample bottle of oil for refreshing the scent.
Sew a 1 1/2″ x 2″ (3 3/4 × 5 cm) piece of fleece to the center of one of the fleece squares to make a little pocket. You’ll want to attach it to the square on three sides and leave one side open (you’ll be inserting the small aroma pad in this pocket to customize your scent).
Now take another fleece square that is the same size as the one you sewed the pocket to, and put them together with the pocket side on the outside. Sew these squares together on 3 sides (leave one side open). Note: when you start or end sewing, reverse directions after 10 stitches or so to reinforce the area and prevent it from coming unstitched.
Fill the fleece warmer with rice or whole flax seeds (until 2/3 full—leave enough space to sew the remaining side without rice getting in the way). Add 3–5 drops essential oil to the rice or whole flax seeds (optional, but this helps cover the musty scent of the rice).
Once the rice or whole flax seeds are in, sew up the remaining side.
To use, simply pop your warmers in the microwave for 30 seconds or until pretty warm (but not hot!). Add a few drops of essential oil to the aroma pad, and place it in the little fleece pocket. Use to keep your hands or feet warm by holding them or placing them in mittens or socks. They should stay warm for about 15–20 minutes.
Use pinking shears to cut your squares to give them a decorative finish.
If you don’t want to sew a pocket for the aroma pad, you can always add your 3–5 drops of essential oil to the rice, then add additional scent directly to the fleece (just avoid citrus essential oils if putting oil directly on the fleece).
Melt 1/3 cup (25 g) of beeswax pellets in a microwave, or use a double boiler. A DIY double boiler can be made by placing a heat-proof glass measuring cup in a pan of water. Place the beeswax pellets in the measuring cup, and heat over medium heat.
While the beeswax is melting, cut out a hole in the pumpkin, gourd, squash, or apple. We used small autumn-shaped cookie cutters to start the cutting process and give the holes some character. We found pumpkin-carving tools helpful for carving holes in the mini pumpkins.
Once you have the holes cut out, set up the wood wicks inside, and cut to about 1/2″ (1 cm) above the pumpkin or apple. You’ll want to double up the wood wicks (2 per candle) for the best continuous flame.
Once your wicks are cut, soak them in the melted beeswax for 5–10 minutes as you keep the beeswax hot.
Pull out the candle wicks, and place them on a paper plate. Match up the pairs (according to size) and place them in the candle wick holders that came with the wicks. Then place them in the pumpkins/apples, and pack beeswax pellets around them to hold them in place and fill the holes.
Add 15 drops of essential oil to each candle (see blend suggestions below). Then pour the melted beeswax into each candle until all have been filled.
These Ribbon Christmas Tree Diffusers are simple to make and incredibly adorable! Hang one up in your car as a diffuser, on your Christmas tree as an ornament, or anywhere else you want to decorate and add a little holiday scent. Gifting one of these is also a great way to introduce a friend to essential oils.
Use This Craft in a Make & Take Class
These Ribbon Christmas Tree Diffusers also make a fun make-and-take project at an essential oil class! Just start with a short lesson about essential oils, and then mingle with your guests as they make their own Ribbon Christmas Tree Diffusers.
Here are the items you will need from AromaTools®:
Needles (want to make sure your string can fit through your needles.)
Clear fingernail polish (or other fray-stopping glue)
Essential oils (such as a Christmas blend or a few single essential oils that your guests can make their own blend with)
Depending on the number of people attending your class, you can set this up in the following stations:
Materials Station. This station should include various types of ribbon, rulers or another way to measure out the ribbon, scissors, and a variety of beads (you’ll need small beads to help tie off the string and larger beads to use as the tree trunk). Every ribbon tree requires 2 small beads and 10 larger beads. Make sure to include a list of materials needed.
Ribbon Tree Assembly Station(s). Have markers, rulers, elastic string, scissors, needles, and clear nail polish at this station with instructions for making the Ribbon Trees.
Essential Oil Station. This is where your guests can make their own essential oil spray. You’ll need the 15 ml spray bottles, vegetable glycerin, essential oils, and distilled water with instructions for making the sprays. If you have a holiday-scented essential oil blend, it would be easy to just offer that. If not, you can offer a few single essential oils and recipes for your guests to make their own holiday-scented blend. Here are a couple holiday blends you can try: Holiday Diffuser Blends, Citrus Spice Diffuser Blend, Autumn-Scented Essential Oil Blends.
4–6 drops essential oil (a holiday-scented blend works great!)
Cut a piece of ribbon 19″ (48 cm) long. Use a marker to place a small dot in the center of the ribbon 2″ (5 cm) from one end of the ribbon to mark your starting point. From this point, make additional marks along the ribbon, spacing them apart at these increments: 2 3/4″ (7 cm), 2 1/2″ (6.5 cm), 2 1/4″ (6 cm), 2″ (5.5 cm), 1 3/4″ (5 cm), 1 1/2″ (4.5 cm), 1 1/4″ (4 cm), 1″ (3.5 cm), etc. (the spaces between the marks should gradually get smaller by a 1/4″ [.5 cm] as you move down the ribbon).
Select your beads. You’ll need 2 small beads to secure the ends and 10 larger beads for the “trunk” of the tree.
Cut a piece of thread/string about 30″ (76 cm) long (you’ll need about 10–12″ [25.5–30.5 cm] for the tree and extra for the loop at the top). Thread your needle, and tie the ends of the string together.
Put your needle through the ribbon at the starting point (the mark 2″ [5 cm] from the end), then through a large bead, then through a small bead; continue threading around the small bead, back through the large bead, and back through the ribbon at the same mark. This secures the bottom of the tree. Now put the needle through another large bead, through the ribbon at the next mark, through another large bead, through the ribbon at the 3rd mark, and repeat until all the large beads are gone. After the last bead is threaded, put the needle through the small bead, then around the small bead, back through the large bead, and back through the last mark on the ribbon. Tie a knot, then go back up through the ribbon, large bead, and small bead. Tie another knot a 2–4″ (5–10 cm) above the tree (or however big you want your hanging loop to be), and cut the thread.
Finish by cutting the ribbon ends to where you think it looks good, and apply clear nail polish or glue to the ends to help prevent fraying.
Make an essential oil spray by placing 1/4 tsp. (1.5 ml) vegetable glycerin in the 15 ml bottle. Add 4–6 drops of essential oil. Fill the rest with distilled water, and screw on the spray top. Shake to combine.
To use, spray your essential oil spray on the ribbon tree, and hang wherever you desire. Refresh the scent by spraying the tree again with more of the essential oil spray.
Do your kids love to play with chalk, but get their hands really messy while they are at it? You can cut down on the mess a bit by making your own chalk in deodorant containers. Homemade retractable chalk is easy to use and fun to play with! And since we love essential oils, we decided to make our chalk scented to enhance the sensory activity for the kids.
To be honest, this project has had a couple of flops, but we kept great notes on our tests so you can learn from our mistakes.
The idea behind making the chalk is simple:
Coat the deodorant containers with petroleum jelly so the chalk doesn’t stick to the container.
Mix 1/4 cup (60 ml) cold water with food coloring and essential oils.
Add 1/2 cup (100 g) plaster of paris to the cold water. Mix, then pour into the containers.
Let sit until completely hardened (about 4 hours).
Twist up and have fun!
Now for the things we learned:
It is a good idea to coat the inside very thoroughly. You want every area of the inside to have a layer of petroleum jelly. We used about 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) of jelly per deodorant container.
Use disposable cups/utensils to create the mixture. Once this stuff hardens, it is a huge pain to get off dishes and utensils. And, honestly, it’s probably not a good idea to pour it down your drain.
To get a vibrant color, you will need a lot of food coloring/dye. The water will need to look pretty dark, because the white plaster of paris lightens the mixture quite a bit.
Plaster of paris can be harmful if inhaled, so be very careful about not creating dust. It is also a good idea to wear a dust mask and do the mixing and pouring outside where it is well ventilated. The mixture also gets pretty hot, so don’t touch it with your bare hands.
Once the plaster of paris and water mix, you don’t have a lot of time before it starts to harden. So work fast, and do only one deodorant container/color at a time. If you are doing multiple colors, you can do some prep work (coat the insides with petroleum jelly, color and scent the water), but don’t mix the plaster of paris with the water until you are ready to quickly mix and pour.
When pouring in the mixture, you may be tempted to stack it up on the top until it looks like it might overflow. Don’t do it. In fact, it is a good idea to only fill to just below the lip of the container so the chalk mixture has a little space to expand before reaching the top (and the end of the petroleum jelly coverage).
When trying to twist up the chalk initially, it will stick a little bit. First, squeeze the sides of the container to loosen the edges. Then, put your fingers on the inside of the twist dial on the bottom, and use the little groves inside as traction. Apply firm pressure as you twist, but be careful not to break the middle piece inside. Once the chalk is loosened initially, it should be easy to twist up and down like you normally would.
Hopefully we haven’t scared you away from doing this project now that you have read all of our notes and cautions. This really is an easy project, and the kids had a blast playing with the chalk once it was done.
You can also do this with lip balm containers for smaller sticks to use on chalkboards. In fact, you should have a little mixture left over in your disposable cup so that you can fill 1 large deodorant container and a few lip balm containers with the recipe below.
Food coloring (you can also use liquid watercolors or tempura paint)
1/2 cup (100 g) plaster of paris (per deodorant container)
Coat the inside of the deodorant container with petroleum jelly. Be very generous, and make sure to apply the jelly everywhere inside, especially the bottom. We used about 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) or more of petroleum jelly per deodorant container. It might help to twist up the bottom piece so you can thoroughly coat it, then lower it back down to coat the sides and middle piece.
Next, pour the cold water into a disposable cup, and add the food coloring and essential oils. It is fun to coordinate the scent of the essential oil with the color of the chalk (e.g., lemon essential oil for yellow chalk, orange essential oil for orange chalk, peppermint essential oil for green or blue chalk, etc.). If you are attempting to do multiple colors and deodorant containers, do steps 1–2 in bulk, but do the rest of the steps for only one container at a time.
Note: If you have a dust mask, put it on for this step. Also, move the project outdoors to finish so you are in a well-ventilated area. Very gently, spoon out 1/2 cup (100 g) of plaster of paris, and add it to the cold water solution. Be very careful not to create dust or inhale any dust. Once the plaster of paris and cold water mix, it will get hot—so don’t touch it with your bare hands until it hardens.
Using a plastic fork, stir the mixture until it is well combined and the color is thoroughly mixed in. You can still add food coloring at this stage, but be quick; you really don’t have a lot of time before it starts to harden.
Pour the chalk mixture into the deodorant container until just below the lip.
Let sit at room temperature for at least 4 hours to harden completely.
Once hardened, squeeze the sides of the container to help loosen the chalk. Then put your fingers on the inside of the twist dial on the bottom of the container, and use the inside grooves as traction. Apply firm pressure as you twist, but be careful not to break the middle piece inside. Once the chalk is loosened initially, it should be easy to twist up and down like you normally would.
Make your own beeswax yarn strips for a fun sensory activity for your children. These strips are fun to bend into shapes to create a picture or sculpture. They also make a great quiet activity to take with you on the go.
Melt the beeswax in a small crock pot or double boiler.
Once the wax is melted, add the jojoba oil.
Cut your yarn to the desired length (9 inches [23 cm] is a good starting point).
Add the yarn to the melted beeswax-jojoba mixture.
Once the yarn is completely covered in wax, remove the yarn from the crock pot using a toothpick or bamboo skewer, and lay out in individual strips to dry. (We laid our strips on a plastic grocery bag.)
Once the wax dries, have fun creating pictures and sculptures with your waxed yarn strips!
If desired, you can add essential oil to the wax mixture for an additional sensory experience. Start with 2–4 drops, and then add more depending on your preference for scent.
Place beeswax pellets and cocoa butter in a heat-proof glass measuring cup.
Melt the oils in the microwave or on the stovetop in a pan filled with an inch of simmering water (creating a double boiler). Heat until completely melted.
Add jojoba oil to the melted oils, and continue to heat until all the oil is incorporated.
Allow to cool for a minute, and then stir in essential oils.
Pour the mixture into your lip balm containers of choice. You may find it easier to use a small dropper or small funnel to transfer the mixture into the small containers without spilling on the side.
Allow mixture to cool and solidify before using.
Create fun labels for your lip balm creations using our 2″ x 4″ Blank White Labels. Set up your labels so that two labels fit side-by-side on each 2″ x 4″ label; then cut the label in half after printing so that you have two labels that each measure 2″ x 2″. This size fits perfectly on our White Lip Balm Dispensers. Our .5″ x 1.75″ Blank White Labels also fit perfectly on our 1/4 oz. Lip Gloss Containers.
This fun art project is not only helpful for keeping kids entertained, but it also helps build fine motor skills as kids learn how to draw up the colored water using a pipette and release the liquid onto their salt image. Get creative, and have fun while enjoying the wonderful scents of essential oils!
“All living things eat, so everyone poops!” – Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi
Now that we are clear on that subject, let’s talk about how to make it a pleasant experience! This Deodorizing Toilet Spray is meant to be used before the elimination process begins. When you spray it in the toilet, the ingredients create a film on top of the water. This creates a barrier and fresh scent on top of the water so as you do your business it traps the smell beneath the surface. The food coloring is optional but is a nice reassurance that it works.
Some great essential oil blend recipes for a toilet spray include the following:
Have you tried doing an advent calendar leading up to Christmas? This is often a fun tradition, especially with kids, to help keep the focus on family and serving rather than on getting and receiving. Even if you don’t have children, it can be a great way to keep up the holiday cheer and count down to the holiday. So, regardless of your circumstances, you can make this advent calendar a fun tradition to start this year!
Using salve jars as an advent calendar allows you to hide activity ideas, recipes, diffuser blends in sample vials, chocOILates, symbols of the activity, or other small items or treats inside that can be enjoyed each day leading up to Christmas. The salve jars are attached to a magnet board or refrigerator with the use of strong magnets glued to the bottoms of the jars.
This cute advent calendar we are sharing today uses stickers with numbers on them that you apply to the tops of the salve jars, and then the salve jars are arranged in the pattern of a Christmas tree. This calendar also features labels listing various holiday activities, essential oil crafts and recipes, service ideas, and more that can be applied to the inside of the salve jars. You can also include the provided recipe cards that correlate with the activity ideas.